The more effective your call center agents are, the better it is for your organization as it means lower costs and increased revenues. Sounds simple enough, yet it’s far from being easy.
So, how can you attain a smoother and more efficient call center operations?
Several things are impeding your journey towards the perfect call center operations. Increased customer demand, large call volumes, and high staff turnover rates can all have a negative effect on your call center’s productivity.
1. Pay Attention To Call Quality And Call Center Metrics
As call volumes start to increase, the chief challenge you’re likely to face is that of handling this increased volume while maintaining quality. In measuring your productivity, don’t just measure the number of calls you’re handling per day. Instead, focus more on the quality of calls handled.
To do this, you can monitor agents’ performance through a scoring system. This system isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution, that’s why you have to customize it according to your company’s specific goals and priorities. You can choose to include customer satisfaction, accuracy, empathy, professionalism, etc.
Here are the importance of setting and monitoring call center metrics:
- Help set a common goal: By having a set of metrics, every member of the company will have a common goal. Also, it will eliminate guesswork and mediocrity.
- Great tool for coaching: Metrics are set to gauge the ability of call center representatives to keep up with the expectations of clients. These also serve as a great tool for coaching.
- Improve productivity and morale: It’s crucial to keep challenging your call center agents to be at their best at all times to ensure utmost productivity. Offer cool incentives to those who successfully attained or exceeded the metrics set in place.
2. Utilize Call Center Software
A study by Ultimate Software found that 92% of employees agree that technology that helps them do their job better improves their work satisfaction.
If you use call center quality assurance software, you can help your agents make informed decisions. Such software will provide them with real-time metrics, as well as improved customer solutions.
A good way to improve productivity, for instance, is to make information on customer wait and handle time. Access to this information by employees will motivate them to improve.
Look for tools, such as a dependable call center analytics software program, such as one from aceyus.com, that will help you improve customers’ experience by focusing on helping the agents do their jobs better.
Here are some of the benefits of a call center software:
- Improves productivity: A call center software can be used for monitoring, generating report, and saving relevant data, allowing you to multitask, without having to use different tools every time.
- Safe: Call center software solutions usually come with data backup available for secure data processing and storage.
- Fast and easy: You’ll find a reliable call center program that allows you to monitor your call metrics and calls almost instantaneously.
- Real-time reporting: With a call center software, you can generate call metric reports as they arrive for quick but smart decision-making. It means no waiting for several hours or the end of your shift to see the outcomes of your efforts. This way, immediate actions can be provided for better results.
3. Engage Your Agents
Your agents are human beings, and human beings are known to respond very well to engagement. Trillions of dollars are lost every year because only a tiny percentage of employees are actively engaged. Imagine if you sought to increase this figure of engaged employees by making your agents feel more valuable as members of your company. It’ll make all the difference!
When you’re going to make decisions that’ll affect the company, especially when it’s going to affect how your agents work, it’s best to involve them in the decision-making process. Take their feedback, include them in the quality assurance process, and have them participate or contribute in any way they can.
4. Be As Flexible As You Can
You may have already considered this from the point of view of how it’ll benefit you. But, you should consider how to do this with the needs of your agents as the central focus. How can you make sure your agents are as comfortable as they can be, and that they feel a general sense of freedom?
The difference between an agent-focused flexibility strategy and a company-focused one is that the latter will likely miss the intricate detail that’ll guarantee what the former is seeking in the first place. You still get what you’re looking for, which is productivity, although you only have to change your approach.
Generally, employees tend to be more productive when they’re working off-site or when they’re working alone. Even so, these aren’t true across the board, so you should try to offer your agents as much autonomy as possible, letting them choose what they think will work best for them.
5. Optimize Customer Flow
After you’ve improved all the other areas, but your call center’s workflow is, still, poor, then you’re probably going to suffer low productivity.
As customers call your company, there should be proper channels to help distribute the traffic evenly and speedily. They should be directed to the correct groups and teams in a timely manner. These teams should be best suited to handle clients’ queries, within a good turnaround time.
Further optimize customer flow by considering the following tips:
- Agents ought to practice on pre-determined scripts to avoid beating around the bush.
- Provide close-ended questioning exercises for your customer service agents that they can apply when talking to customers.
- Assess customer feedback and classify customers according to their needs and reason for calling for team review. Improve best call practices, and modify or delete those ones negatively affecting customer satisfaction.
Your call center operation is the nerve center of your business, making it essential for you to pay utmost attention to it. A lot of your efforts will include paying attention to your call quality and metrics, using the right technology and software, and improving the working conditions for your agents. You should consider these things to help improve the workflow and optimize your call center operation.